Digital technology has turned traditional business competition on its head. You're still competing with the company across the street. But now you're competing with companies across the ocean, too. Are you keeping up?
If you need to join the digital world, the cure is digital transformation consulting. If you're new to this term, our handy guide will get you up to speed.
What is Digital Transformation Consulting?
Digital transformation consulting, also known as DTC, is exactly as it sounds. A DTC specialist guides your company through the process of integrating new technology.
Beyond updating your POS system, digital transformation refers to a more in-depth "transformation." It brings every department up to speed with the latest and most relevant technology. In some cases, digital transformation means re-organizing your process altogether.
Some business owners think digital transformation involves choosing the right software. In reality, this is only one part of the process. A holistic approach to digital transformation should optimize every part of your company.
Why Do I Need a Digital Transformation?
Digital technology has changed the landscape of every industry. One of the fastest ways to lose business is to fall behind. The business world is catching on to this. In fact, the digital transformation industry grew to be worth $23 billion in 2016.
There are several reasons why it's crucial to be on the cutting edge:
Reason #1: Your Customers Expect It
Digital technology has made convenience an expected priority for consumers.
Take the food service industry for example. Twenty years ago, take-out diners had to travel to a restaurant, place their order, and wait. That's assuming the restaurant was open.
Today, customers expect to check your hours, place a delivery order, and pay the tab online. And they want to do it all from their smartphone.
These conveniences are no longer perks - they're the industry standard. Similar changes have happened in most industries throughout Australia and across the globe.
As the tech-savvy population grows, this expectation will continue to grow. A digital transformation is the only way to get into the game.
Reason #2: You're Leaving Efficiency on the Table
Technology has created new ways for all departments of your company to coordinate.
Your shipping department can immediately see when a paid order is ready to be fulfilled. Your sales team can always know how much product you have available. Your human resources automatically import employees' evaluations into their files.
The more efficiently your company runs, the less overhead you have. A digital transformation can maximize your efficiency and reduce errors and losses.
Reason #3: You're Missing Marketing Opportunities
Digital marketing is growing as rapidly as technology is, and for good reason. With all the time consumers spend using digital media, you need to be online to get their attention.
Part of a digital transformation involves updating your marketing strategy. It's essential to bring your website into the modern age, ramp up your social media marketing, and more.
What Should I Get from My Digital Transformation Consultant?
Every company is unique, so your digital transformation will be tailored to you. Here are the common components that it may include:
Integrating All Departments Together with Technology
There is specialized software for HR, accounting, IT, sales, and every part of your company. The problem, though, is that they need to be able to work together.
A digital transformation consulting expert will help you design a comprehensive solution. This may involve many parts of one system. Or, it may involve several types of software customized to work together.
The best option will depend on your industry, your business model, and your size. A good consultant will be able to adjust their software choices to your specific needs.
Making Use of Digital Marketing
Digital marketing is a broad term. It can include search engine optimization, mobile ads, social media marketing, and more.
Today, digital marketing is essential, but many companies don't know how to get started.
A digital transformation consultant will be able to help you start digital marketing. They will also help you do it in a way that is efficient, convenient, and easy to use.
Offering Digital Options to Customers
Whether your customers are businesses or consumers, they expect digital convenience. A digital transformation consultant will evaluate the way your transactions occur.
They will help you find a process that is convenient and attractive for customers. And yet, it must be manageable for your business.
How Do I Find a Digital Marketing Consultant?
Once you decide to take on a digital transformation, finding the right consultant is key. Digital transformation consulting makes up 21% of Australia's consulting industry. That means you have many consultants to choose from.
Here are a few tips:
Tip #1: Look Closely at Their Experience
A digital transformation consulting firm may have an impressive 20 years of experience. But you need to know more.
How much experience do they have in your specific industry? A retail company will have different digital needs than a healthcare company or a law firm.
How experienced are they with businesses of your size? The digital solution they design needs to fit your budget and handle all your needs.
How successful are the businesses they've worked with? An experienced consultant with mostly dissatisfied clients is not an expert.
A digital transformation consulting firm should give you names and contact information for their past clients. Take the extra step to talk to the clients yourself.
Tip #2: Find Out if They're in it for the Long Haul
Some digital transformation consultants work on a project basis. They help you once, and then they're gone. Others require a retainer and they work with you on a continual basis.
First, find out which solution fits your company's needs and budget best. Then look for a consultant who is comfortable with the arrangement you need.
If you plan to operate on a project basis, find out what happens if you're dissatisfied. The consultant should stand by their work and be available for revision.
Tip #3: Find Out Exactly Who You'll be Working With
Some digital transformation consulting firms have extremely successful partners. But if they only assign new, inexperienced consultants to your case, this can be a concern.
Don't just get the firm's qualifications. Learn about the actual consultants you'll be working with.
How to Start Your Digital Transformation
Now that you understand the basics of digital transformation consulting, it's time to take that first step! Contact our digital transformation consultants to learn how we can bring your business up to date.